Recently, a young man lost his life to an e-scooter accident. The report says that he fell down and his injuries were so grave that he never regained consciousness. He was an expert in this field and worked at a shop that sells e-scooters. He was not wearing a helmet.
I came across another article where a person on facebook claimed that an E-scooter dashed against a toddler, leaving her so injured that she had to undergo a series of surgeries. I dug deeper and found various such instances in this green city. Are e-scooters an eco-friendly option of commute or are they the new menace for the pedestrians on the footpaths?
E- scooters have become popular in Singapore; and why would they not? They provide the best way for the last mile: from the MRT to the office or home. They are green, comfortable for those who don’t mind standing and can go faster than the routine cycles. Most of these go about 35 km on a 2-hour charge.
But are they an answer to air pollution?
In the last one year alone, there have been many instances. Just a few days back, the police arrested a 17-year-old who dashed against a 53-year-old housewife. She was severely injured, needing an ICU admission. The teenager may face a fine and an imprisonment up to 4 years.
Accidents like these seem to be on the rise and there is a public outcry against the use of these vehicles. E-scooters have the potential to go really fast. A youtube video captured by a youtuber shows an e-scooter going at 40 km per hour before going on a footpath. The permissible limit for such vehicles in 15 km per hour.
What is the Law?
The laws are being made prohibiting the use of e-scooters on roads. In the ‘Recommendations by the Active Mobility Advisory Panel Submitted to Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and Minister for Transport, Mr Khaw Boon Wan on 17 March 2016’, the panel suggests a use of all the mobility vehicles in this manner.
This allows the e-scooters to be on the footpaths, along with other pedestrians. However, many complain that these e-scooters go faster than the permissible limits. Many are modified illegally to go faster, and there lies the problem.
What was shocking to me was, there is no minimum age recommendation for the use of these. There is no registration of any kind, and LTA remains less powerful about the offenders.
As the fellow citizens of this great country, we should use this convenience responsibly. Singapore is one of the safest countries in the world! Let us keep it that way!
(Image: courtesy Youtube)